A dynamic weather system is expected to bring heavy rain and strong winds to Alabama from tomorrow into Tuesday morning. Here are the important details to note about this weather system:
The rain is expected to start tomorrow during the day, but the heaviest downpour is anticipated between 11:00 p.m. tomorrow and 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday.
SPC introduces an “enhanced risk” (level 3/5) of severe thunderstorms for the Gulf Coast for tomorrow night… pic.twitter.com/jfOfpCsC7A
— James Spann (@spann) January 7, 2024
Rainfall is expected to be heavy at times, with a high likelihood of 2-3 inches across the state. This could potentially result in flooding.
Gradient winds, which are not associated with thunderstorms, could reach gusts of up to 45/50 mph in certain areas tomorrow night and Tuesday morning. There is a possibility that this could result in the toppling of trees and power lines.
The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) has categorized the severe thunderstorms expected tomorrow night and into the pre-dawn hours on Tuesday as an “enhanced risk” (level 3/5) for areas south of a line from Millry to Jackson to Florala. Moving further north, the risk level decreases to a “slight risk” (level 2/5) for locations such as Demopolis, Troy, and Dothan. In the northernmost areas, including Tuscaloosa, Wetumpka, and Eufaula, the risk is classified as “marginal.”
The weather outlook for Tuesday morning at 6:00 a.m. now indicates an increased risk (level 3/5) for the southeast corner of the state, specifically in areas such as Dothan, Ozark, and Geneva.
A line of storms is expected to pass through South Alabama late tomorrow night, bringing with it the potential for damaging winds. The Gulf Coast region, including Mobile, Baldwin, Washington, and Escambia counties, faces the greatest risk of tornadoes, with the possibility of a strong EF-2 or higher tornado occurring.
Inland areas will experience more stable air, which will help reduce the risk of tornadoes as you move further away from the coast. However, it’s important to note that the non-thunderstorm gradient winds will remain high throughout the entire state.
The first week of 2024 is coming to a close, and North and Central Alabama are experiencing a beautiful but cool day.
The low stratocumulus clouds over North Alabama are gradually transforming into stratocumulus clouds as they become more cellular, thanks to the heating of the boundary layer. As a result, there is an increase in sunshine. However, it is interesting to note that the stratocumulus field over North Alabama is expanding, contrary to what one might expect. This expansion is due to colder air aloft, which provides the necessary instability for the clouds to form.
The overnight temperatures varied across Alabama, with Greenville in Butler County experiencing a low of 33F, while Gasque in Baldwin County had a milder low of 46F. Gasque’s relatively warmer temperature can be attributed to its position between the warmer waters of Bon Secour Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, on the Fort Morgan Peninsula west of Gulf Shores. In Central Alabama, Birmingham and Tuscaloosa recorded lows of 41F, Anniston and Calera had lows of 40F, and Bessemer reported a low of 39F. Haleyville and Albertville, situated in different locations, both experienced lows of 37F.
It’s fascinating to note that the lowest temperature in the state was recorded in Greenville, located in South Central Alabama. This anomaly can be attributed to the persistent layer of clouds that remained throughout the night over North and Central Alabama. These clouds acted as a protective blanket, effectively insulating the region and preventing temperatures from dropping as low as in the clear areas to the south.
High clouds are spreading over South Alabama as the fast flow of the southern branch of the jetstream continues. This advance will persist throughout the afternoon and tonight, creating the potential for beautiful sunsets in those areas later today.
Tomorrow promises to be an intriguing day as a robust upper trough dominates the western United States, spanning from Montana to New Mexico. Meanwhile, a surface low will gradually weaken as it tracks from the Texas Panhandle into Oklahoma. Simultaneously, a secondary low is expected to develop over Missouri later in the day. This latter low will undergo rapid intensification as it advances into Illinois by early Tuesday.
During the day, the intensifying low will push the developing warm sector, resulting in increasing winds. In the morning, winds will be around 8 mph, but by the afternoon, they will pick up to 20 mph and further intensify to 25 mph in the evening. Gusts of 25 mph will be noticeable by mid-morning, and by evening, they will reach an astonishing 42-48 mph. Yes, you read that right, gusts of 48 mph, even without thunderstorms. This strong wind will inevitably cause tree limbs and trees to fall, leading to power outages. As a result, temperatures on Monday will only reach the lower and middle 50s.
The National Weather Service offices will be issuing wind advisories later today or early Monday morning.
On Monday evening, South Alabama will experience a shift in weather as warmer air moves in. Interestingly, temperatures will rise during the evening, reaching 55F after midnight along I-20 and 60F or higher south of Montgomery. Additionally, extreme South Alabama and the Florida Panhandle will see 60 degree dewpoints, which will set the stage for severe weather.
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